Queerplatonic? What?

Q.I.D. is a series that focuses on the education of queer identity, and serves as a resource for those who are questioning their identity.


Queerplatonic can be a difficult identity to discuss if you don’t identify as that yourself, especially when it comes down to figuring out the differences between platonic, queerplatonic, and romantic relationships. Because of this, I decided to interview Jackson and E, two people who are both in a queerplatonic relationship together.

First of all, how do you identify?

J: As a big list of things. Genderqueer, queerplatonic, ace, etc.

E: Bigender, ace as hell, polyromantic, genderqueer

For those who may not know, what does queerplatonic mean?

J: Queerplatonic is a type of relationship that is like dating, but not dating. It is closer than friendship, but not romantic. It can be monogamous or poly.

So both of you are in a queerplatonic relationship. What does that mean and how is that different from regular dating?

J: So first of all, we don’t kiss each other.

E: We don’t go on “dates”; we’re free to find romantic interests if we choose to. There’s no romance.

J: Yeah. It’s like being really, really, really close friends. In queerplatonic relationships, sometimes the boundaries are different. Like somebody who’s just friends with someone else, their boundaries are not holding hands, hugging, or sharing a bed. Sometimes, for queerplatonic relationships, even if their platonic boundaries are like that, there will be different boundaries with their zucchini. You’re generally closer, be it physically or emotionally.

You mentioned the term zucchini. Could you explain that a bit more?

E: Zucchini is an easier way to say queerplatonic partner or QPR. Honestly, though, zucchini is cuter.

J: Yeah. And the term zucchini was “invented” because queerplatonic partners got tired of saying that. So they made that up as a joke and it stayed.

Time for the lighting round of misconceptions. Ready?

E: Sure.

Isn’t that just a close friendship with your best friend?

E: My close friends will go out and hang out and stuff, but it’s different because with Jackson, my zucchini, I can talk about things like religion and things that I would never talk about with other friends.

J: Personally, I find it hard to say, “I love you,” to anybody, even family members. But I tell E I love them every single day.

Why do you guys have to make everything queer?

J: Because I’m queer?

E: Um, straight people can have these too. They just don’t, so…

J: Technically, it doesn’t have to be queer. You could use quasiplatonic.

If I do these things that are associated with queerplatonic relationships, does that make me gay?

J & E: No.

J: It’s not romantic nor sexual so it doesn’t have anything to do with those identities.

E: Listen to Jackson. (They both start laughing.)

Isn’t that just the same thing as friends with benefits?

E & J: No!

E: Friends with benefits implies that there is making out or sex involved, and seeing that this is not a sexual relationship, none of that is involved.

J: Especially since we’re both ace.

E: Yeah, no. Sorry! (They both start laughing.)


As we can see, queerplatonic is the grey area between platonic and romantic relationships. It exists in that area where boundaries intersect a bit. If you’re interested in exploring this further, I would start with the Aromantics Wiki post on Queerplatonic Relationships.


3 thoughts on “Queerplatonic? What?

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  1. I was recommended this post on the WordPress app after I read & commented on a post from someone who identifies as platonirimantic. I clicked there and it had the image and the word conclusion near the bottom but no body of a blog post. That’s because the WordPress app, at least as it works on my Android phone, always has a white background, and even trying to select the page to see if there was text hidden to select wasn’t working for me. It turns out, when I switched to my chrome browser on my phone though that yes this whole article is white text and while yeah it looks good on this background, FYI you might want to switch to a grey or pastel color or something so lipeopleould read it on both your chosen blog background color but also on the app where the background is always white. Just… a suggestion.

    I am a little shocked that in 2017 anyone is still promoting the use of the word zuchinni for queerplatonic partner or using it within their own QPR. I’m pretty sure a lot of ace folks don’t actually like it and avoid the zucchini part even if they are in a QPR. I’ve seen a sentiment like far for years and it’s how I felt while in my own queerplatonic relationship. But this covered things pretty well, for a simple interview.

    One thing I’ll add is that the aro community is embracing queerplatonic terminology even if they do want sex, too, so it CAN sometimes be a friends with benefits relationship where sex is involved if you feel it’s still platonic but other people around you won’t accept how or why the person you have sex with regularly or even exclusively is “just a friend” and not a romantic partner. OR occasionally aro aces do kiss. OR, and I’m not sure this is clear in the article/blog post above, queerplatonic partners don’t HAVE to say I love you, ever sleep in the same bed, feel at all comfortable holding hands, etc. There’s no one size fits all for QPPs. Part of the beauty is in making up your own boundaries, your own desires for the relationship, always breaking the traditional mold of what friendship is supposed to encompass.

    I was in a queerplatonic partnership and it’s hard to describe why it wasn’t an Asexual & celibate romance. Sometimes I thought maybe it was. We’re boyfriend/girlfriend, except we’re not sexually attracted to each other, never kiss, rarely touch at all even to hug or anything, and he was pretty comfortable with boyfriend/girlfriend terminology. But it was the internal feelings too, the fact that we all our strong feelings for each other still felt platonic in nature. It was the fact that we were so different than how allosexual (non ace) parole typically do romantic relationships that queerplatonic more quickly captured that and felt more accurate. We were friends with commitment, and I just didn’t think the commitment was enough (or the correct factor) to now say it was romantic. But it also is super different from how most late twenty somethings handle friendships in their lives.

    Going forward I still want a new queerplatonic partner, for practical commitment reasons – to raise children with, mainly. I’m sad my former queerplatonic partnership didn’t last with that goal coming to fruition/fulfilled. I’m otherwise happy with a bunch of friends, some of whom I’m quite close to, but if I don’t have commitment with those folks, for ME then none of those bonds are gonna be categorized queerplatonic.

    And because I love vidding and am in this side of fandom, I’ll leave you with these queerplatonic themed fanvideos, which you can take or leave. There is platonic or nom-romantic kissing in the first vid within two of the featured relationships, purposely no kissing in most of the featured relationships though and especially in the final vid. I wanted no kissing to capture my own queerplatonic bond.


      1. Thank you for this comment! I actually don’t know much about queerplatonic relationships myself, and I’m trying to learn more so that I can be an ally and accurately represent people when I discuss their identities. I guess you could say that queerplatonic relationships themselves exist on a spectrum. I’ll be sure to look into it further before making an update post.

        Also, thanks for letting me know about the problem with the text on the WordPress app! I’ll make sure to get on that right away.

        Liked by 1 person

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